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Disney Outbreak: Do You Need a Measles Booster Shot?

By    |   Thursday, 22 Jan 2015 11:21 AM

 
The measles outbreak that originated in California's Disneyland is growing with at least 70 cases reported so far in California and Mexico. The highly contagious disease can spread by air via coughing and sneezing, and even vaccinated adults are at risk, according to Dr. Gil Chavez, California's state epidemiologist.

"We can expect to see many cases of this vaccine-preventable disease unless people take precautionary measures," said Dr. Chavez.

Chavez warned unvaccinated people to stay away from Disneyland until the outbreak is over, but noted that even people who have been vaccinated have been diagnosed with measles.

With age, the protection afforded by vaccines wanes, especially if the body hasn't been exposed to the illness. The antibodies created by vaccines that fight an illness can "forget" if they haven't been exposed to it over the years. That's the cases with measles, since Americans are protected from early childhood by the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine. Therefore, those who were vaccinated over a decade ago may not be fully protected. Experts believe as many as 1 in 10 adults may be at risk.
 
Until 1989, guidelines required only one dose of the measles vaccine, but after an outbreak, two doses were required. Those who received only one have less protection, and should get a booster, says Dr. James Cherry of UCLA. "I would say anybody who doesn't know they've had two doses should get a dose of the vaccine," he told the Los Angles Times.

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The measles outbreak that originated in California's Disneyland is growing with at least 70 cases reported so far in California and Mexico. The highly contagious disease can spread by air via coughing and sneezing, and even vaccinated adults are at risk, according to Dr....
measles, Disney, outbreak, vaccination, booster, shot
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2015-21-22
Thursday, 22 Jan 2015 11:21 AM
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